BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — ROTC students at Arvin High School presented a check to Honor Flight Kern County to send local veterans to Washington D.C. to visit the memorials dedicated to the wars they fought in.

ROTC students from Arvin donated $2,500 to the veterans group.

Veterans outreach coordinator Armando Soliz says trips like these, where veterans are celebrated by the public helps rectify the way they were treated when they first returned home to the U.S. decades ago.

“We spent 40 years, 50 years just feeling disrespected and dishonored and unappreciated when we were all released from the military. There were some of us we didn’t even acknowledge our veteran status for many many years,” Soliz said.

“So what this trip does, it’s a healing process. It healed us and we were finally able to make peace with this country and make peace for ourselves.”

Honor Flight Kern County has sent 45 flights to Washington D.C. with the first ever dating back to 2012. It’s unclear when the next flight will take off, but it should be sometime next spring.